'Art and power' by Carol Chilcott

I can remember that I went to three special schools

Henbury Primary, Henbury Manor and New Fosseway

One of the teachers was mad and bossy

She was a monster

Mrs. Randall

A bitch, she was a dragon.

She got at me

She hit me

She hit me on the top of the leg with a ruler

She sent me to the headmistress, Mrs. Duggan

Who told me off but I didn’t do anything

I was just being myself

I was doing my writing

I was doing it wrong

She said, ‘You’re doing it wrong’

I was trying to do it

I was cross, it was hard.

She could have told me what to do

But she hit my leg

And she took me to the office

She gave me what-for

Smack with the ruler.


It seems to me that part of going to school

Is to learn to do what you are told;

Is to learn that you are not trusted;

Is to learn that you are stupid.

I learnt that I can get angry and worked up


I think schools should be about treating children like people

And showing them their power

Now I have art and power I’d like to get that out

And give it to children in schools

So they will have their own rights

And all of their own learning.